Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Three Concerns for the Future

As a citizen of Singapore, and to a lesser extent a citizen of the world, I have three concerns which I believe must be addressed. These concerns are issues which, in my opinion, will only become increasingly important and prickly in the near future. Hence, these issues merit attention- ignorance of them may well lead to unsavory consequences.

The most minor of these matters, at least relatively, is the problem of education. My interest in education lies in the fact that education has the potential to be a panacea for numerous problems. Ironically, that very fact is problematic to education. When we assign some political purpose to education, we risk altering the nature of education itself. Furthermore, who is decide which particular outcome is desirable?

An issue which is of greater concern is healthcare. In fact, we are already being plagued by this problem. It is inevitable that we will all fall sick, but when that happens, who is responsible for our medical fees? Ultimately, is it our own responsibility or that of external entities? More importantly, where does the dough come from? This matter deserves more attention because even if healthcare is being managed satisfactorily today, with a rapidly aging population (both in Singapore and worldwide), the scales may yet tip towards chaos.

The final point of interest is also an effect of the rapidly aging population. This last concern is retirement. More specifically, how are we to support the aged? Again, is it the responsibility of the aged to have sufficent savings or are the young to shoulder the burden? What schemes should be put in place to ensure that the aged will not spend a destitute sunset? It is increasingly clear that current strategies to support the aged are overly dependent on those that are younger, and hence unstable. Plainly, some other solution must be formulated to deal with this.

Any person who can effectively deal with these three concerns deserves at least a Nobel prize.

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Jackson Tan said...

Personally, I'm not so much worried about aging population than environmentalism. The environmental degradation will probably get worse and worse until it becomes bad enough for politicians to finally notice. By that time, how much longer will it take to stop the momentum of the downward spiral, if we can do it at all?

At least we have insanely desperate but immediate solutions to the healthcare and aging problem (kill off the sick and the old, for example). But there are probably none for environmental problems.

The Negative Man said...

If I were to run a single nation, enviromental degradation would probably not be a top priority on my list. I agree that the enviroment is important, but enviromental degradation isn't a problem which can be solved by the efforts of any single nation alone.

I'll rather concentrate on other more 'human' issues while taking small steps to slow the enviroment degradation. Of course, if the more nations agree to concentrate efforts to save the earth such that it actually becomes viable, I'll put in much more resources.

I believe this would be the best use of limited resources.